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2010 Best Theme Park Attraction nominee: Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure

By Robert Niles
Published: February 9, 2010 at 5:15 PM
Today's attraction spotlight? Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure in Orlando - the seventh seed in the Best Roller Coaster bracket of the 2010 Best Theme Park Attraction Tournament.

Incredible Hulk Coaster at Universal's Islands of Adventure

You've entered Bruce Banner's laboratory, as he's attempting another experiment to reverse his, uh, gamma ray problem - you know, the one that turns him into the Incredible Hulk.

But as the experiment starts (c'mon, say it with me now), something goes horribly wrong and you explode from the gamma tube at 40 mph in coaster builder Bolliger & Mabillard's only launch start. Hulk gets right to business, throwing you into an immediate inversion, followed by a cobra roll and a loop, then plunging into a fog-filled tunnel at a top speed of 65 mph.

Exiting the fog tunnel on Incredible Hulk Coaster

From there, Hulk spins riders through a corkscrew, another loop, as well as a couple of over-banked turns and a final corkscrew.

It's not anywhere near the tallest or fastest coaster out there, but in typical Bolliger & Mabillard fashion, Incredible Hulk Coaster blends speed and inversions into a delightful mix of roller coaster mayhem, one that leaves most riders exhilarated, rather than nauseated. Quite a feat, really, given the number and sequence of inversions involved here.

But is it enough for Incredible Hulk Coaster to win the title as Best Roller Coaster, or Best Theme Park Attraction, in America? We'll find out when voting begins in the tournament, in March. In the meantime, let's hear your thoughts about Hulk, in the comments.

Readers' Opinions

From Joshua Counsil on February 9, 2010 at 5:38 PM
This instantly became my favorite roller coaster when I rode in 2002. That title has since changed, but the punch this coaster packs hasn't.

The first loop and cobra roll alone make this attraction worthwhile, though the latter half of the coaster dwindles somewhat. Also, I cannot wait more than 40 minutes in line because of that relentless techno, and for these reasons, Hulk "only" gets a 9-Outstanding.

For the record, I claim this as the best coaster in IOA. Dueling Dragons has/have a better gimmick, but it/they leave(s) me a little rattled, whereas I could ride Hulk all day.

From luis gonzalez on February 9, 2010 at 6:19 PM
i like-a-da Hulk! isa so good!

The hulk was my first coaster, and is still in my top three with shiekra, and goliath SFOG, though the back has become alot rougher in the passing years. Hulk also has the coolest sounding track (WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!)

WOrd 2 yO MoThEr!@#$%^&*()

From James Rao on February 9, 2010 at 8:22 PM
Not sure if my mother had anything to do with it, but the Incredible Hulk is an excellently conceived and executed coaster. Even the theme of the coaster is well done, with sights, sounds, and a constantly playing cartoon (in the rider swap waiting area) adding to the narrative. The initial launch uphill is phenomenal especially when combined with Bruce Banner's cries as he changes to the Hulk. B&M just knows how to make coasters, and Universal knows how to bring them to life!

If not for Spider-Man, the Hulk coaster would be the best attraction at IOA.

From Sylvain Comeau on February 9, 2010 at 10:21 PM
A great coaster, but it rattles way too much. I always walk away with a headache. I think this ride needs a refurb. Couldn't it be smoother?

I heard that the back of the coaster is less rough; can anyone confirm that?

From Manny Barron on February 9, 2010 at 11:50 PM
This is a fun ride. The first 5-10 seconds of the ride are awesome. Even though its only the seventh seed it can go far in the tourney because its located in Orlando.
From Joshua Counsil on February 10, 2010 at 12:01 AM
"Couldn't it be smoother?"

...

Really? I don't even have anything clever to address that with.

And James - this coaster has everything to do with your mother.

WOrd 2 yO MoThEr!@#$%^&*()

From Rob Chandler on February 10, 2010 at 3:52 AM
my favourite ride seeded so far, quality
From Steve Ward on February 10, 2010 at 4:34 AM
This is my favourite coaster of them all.. Amazing.

beats a cup of coffee in the morning, NOTHING gets you energized like an early morning ride on The Hulk

my girlfriend's favourite coaster also. Brilliant.. also a nice length ride too.

From James Rao on February 10, 2010 at 6:49 AM
WOrd 2 My MoThEr!@#$%^&*() is right!!! I hope she is getting the proper royalty checks!
From 24.162.248.231 on February 10, 2010 at 7:10 AM
My wife's favorite
From Derek Potter on February 10, 2010 at 8:43 AM
I like this one ok. The launch is the highlight of the ride, which presents a little bit of an issue for me because it's at the beginning of the ride. The first couple of elements maintain that excitement, but for me the ride starts losing steam after that. It doesn't finish strong compared to how it started, which throws off the pacing of the ride a little. Points are also deducted for loud techno music.

Nice ride, but this one might go early. If you want a little "bracketology" analysis, I think this one got a higher seed than it deserves.

From Kris Jeronimus on February 10, 2010 at 12:11 PM
I went on this ride for the first time last year. While I found it to be quite a good rush during the launch and first inversions, I agree with an earlier comment that it can be a head banger. I rode in the front row once and then in the middle, so maybe that changed my experience. It's a fun coaster, no doubt, but I prefer a little smoother ride.
From Joshua Counsil on February 10, 2010 at 7:28 PM
Gotta agree with Steve -

Nothing quite like a ride on Hulk to start the day, and with its proximity to the entrance, it encourages you to.

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